Rare bats found living in dinosaur's belly

The triceratops is part of a range of large replica dinosaurs. Credit: Devon Wildlife Trust

A colony of bats has been found living in a dinosaur exhibit in Ilfracombe.

The lesser horseshoe bats were discovered roosting inside a fibre-glass triceratops, part of a display at the Combe Martin Wildlife and Dinosaur Park.

The finding was made by The Devon Greater Horseshoe Bat Project.

Volunteers are carrying out night time surveys using ultrasonic bat detectors and mapping the places where the nocturnal mammals live in Devon.

The number of lesser horseshoe bats has declined in the UK over recent decades because of the loss of hedges, falling insect numbers and the destruction of their roosts.

Combe Martin Wildlife and Dinosaur Park is asking visitors to give the bats space and not disturb them.